Restaurants & Bars 5

WSJ dining recommendations for Sapporo

SG | May 31, 200205:16 PM

Check Sapporo's Alleys
To Find the Finest Food

It is a shame that many foreigners won't be able to break the language barrier when ordering food in Sapporo (although they can always go through the rituals of sign language or pointing at plastic models). Hokkaido cuisine is hearty and rough and based on the availability of superb raw seasonal produce, from all kinds of seafood to white asparagus and even potatoes.

"With such ingredients, they don't have to work so hard or elaborate like they do in the south," says Phred Kaufman, long-time Sapporo resident and owner of the Beer Inn. Mr. Kaufman is the creator of such specialty beers as Soba Buckwheat and World Burp 2002.

He suggests sticking to intimate places lodged in alleys or on upper floors of the Susukino district. Here are a few of his favorite spots, but beware. None of them has English menus.

* * *

Lovingly prepared and served kaiskei, or elaborate set dinners that feature rare local vegetables and sashimi on hand-carved blocks of ice.
Address: 1F, New Keiwa Building, South 5 West 6, Chuo-ku
Tel: 011-552-8836

* * *

The place for real jingisukan, with tender grilled lamb and thick slices of onion served up for the after-hours set.
Address: In the alley on the West Side of the Crystal Building, South 5 West 4, Chuo-ku
Tel: no listing

* * *
Izakaya Henohenomoheji

An intimate place for local specialties such as mountain mushrooms and frozen salmon sashimi.
Address: 3F, Eriyama Building, South 5 West 4, Chuo-ku
Tel: 011-512-1668

* * *
Yakitori Jumbo

Foreign-friendly owner Miyake grills everything with care and offers some of the best jazz in town.
Address: Same alley as Daruma, on the West Side of the Crystal Building, South 5 West 4, Chuo-ku
Tel: 011-531-6451

* * *

There is often a line here, and why not? It serves some of the world's best cooked crab, raw salmon meat and roe, heaped generously on fresh rice for only ¥380 ($3).
Address: In the middle of Nijo Ichiba Fish Market, East 1, South 2, Chuo-ku
Tel: no listing

-- John Krich

Updated May 31, 2002

Want to stay up to date with this post? Sign Up Now ›
Log In or Sign Up to comment

Recommended From CH